School and university models are in serious need of reform and the time is right.

In education, we believe that parents should have options for public schools and that no family’s destiny should be determined by its zip code.

Don deLaski watched his public high school in Washington, DC fall from a source of community pride in the 1940s to the “No Child Left Behind” failing schools list in the last decade. We see public charter schools, with accountability, autonomous leadership, but still a public mandate, as a scalable solution in chronically failing districts. With 43% of the city’s public school students in charters (many run by social visionaries) and a high-functioning authorizer monitoring academic results, Washington DC is a national model.

The Foundation has supported college access programs and is just beginning to fund entrepreneurs working to harness technology and new learning models to improve the pipeline from high school completion through college to professional careers.